1973 Plymouth Duster 340: A Real Wedge?

340wedge1

This 1973 Plymouth Duster 340 caught my eye here on eBay for its low mileage and unmolested condition, along with the prominent graphics package on the hood. However, a few things that don’t add up give me some pause in considering this car the survivor that the seller purports it to be. I’d welcome your opinions!

340wedge2

First and foremost, this car does look pretty great. The body is in nice shape and provides some validation to the sub-30,000 mileage claim. The seller included a vintage photo of the car which seems to show it in the same configuration, albeit with much better looking black steel wheels and dog dish hubcaps. It all adds up, but most sources indicate the “Wedge” trim was limited to the 1971 models only, so could this be a case of a replacement hood or enthusiastic graphics person?

340wedge3

Things look pretty good in the interior as well, with just the right amount of wear on the seats to substantiate a “used but not abused” history. At least they cared enough not to rip up the seating surfaces, whether the mileage is accurate or not. That steering wheel is horrible, however, and needs to go. Since the car has been repainted, who knows what else was removed and replaced. I have a feeling that’s how the inaccurate Wedge stickers came to be on the hood.

340wedge4

With power steering, power brakes and a numbers-matching 340, there’s no denying this Duster has some desirable features. I’m just left a little cold on what it really is, though – if the fact books are correct that 1971 models were the only ones to get the Wedge applique, then this car isn’t OEM correct. The repaint also hurts value here, and unless it was rusty, it would have been better to leave it as-found. This is an attractive muscle car and likely loads of fun, but I don’t think it’s quite the survivor it appears to be at first glance.

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Comments

  1. JW

    Cool Duster but for the price he’s asking it should need nothing but your butt in the drivers seat.

  2. Rhett

    I love a 340 mopar as much as the next guy, but no, no, no. Not at 1/3 of the BIN/Reserve. There is so much “customizing to taste” on this car you could spend the purchase price putting it back to stock. The 5th VIN digit will tell you whether it’s a real 340, but at this point it might as well be a clone. Sure, I’d drive it….at 8k if it ran like a banshee.

    • YoungCrone

      Well, except for being an automatic, it’s quite to *my* taste, generally. (Too many of these are like painted ‘Hemi Orange’ or something else too loud for me. :) , ) I was never much for the blacked-out hoods, really, cause I enjoyed the shine at night. (Mine was beige and would stay that way, even with fresh paint. :) ) I would have considered jellybean mags acceptable for a period choice, if I couldn’t get hold of the rally wheels. :) )

  3. Dave at OldSchool Restorastions

    ” Survivor”…….???? Maybe you have never seen a real Survivor and thus you have no comparative. Unfortunate that the term gets too much incorrect use

    The seller didn’t use that word to describe his car , and neither would I……

    Decent car, but needs work

  4. Mike D

    Jeff, I think you are right about the wedge 340 being a ’71 only..possibly a 72, but pretty sure it was just 71 this is a nice looking car.. maybe someday

  5. randy

    I fainted when I saw the price.

  6. Mark S Member

    Nice car but I’d have to agree with you guys on the price, just because he’s asking 35K doesn’t mean he’ll get it. I think 15K to 20K would be more reasonable.

  7. Jim
  8. Frankie Paige

    Nice driver, but not a 35k car, for that price it would have to be a higher caliber car. I don’t see anyone with that kind of money buying it ….unless they recently had a lobotomy

  9. The Walrus

    The partial VIN listed on eBay is for a 1973 Duster 340 4 BBL, so if that is verified it is a real 340 car. The values for a 1973 (or ’72) are much lower than for a 1971. There are many reasons for the difference in value, but suffice it to say this 1973 is trying to look like a 1971, even though his asking is more than twice what a perfect 1971 is worth. On a good day the car listed is worth about $7000. On most others $5000. I doubt the classless mag wheels and backwoods chic steering wheel are helping.

    1973 Duster
    2d 340 Cpe Spt 6: 420 5: 1,260 4: 2,100 3: 4,730 2: 7,350 1: 10,500

  10. Bob B

    A guy that I parked next too in the base parking lot (USAF) in Texas had one. I really liked the 340 wedge decal, it looked bad ass, it was a 1971 which is THE ONLY year that had that hood decal. From memory it was a bluish silver, I could be wrong. I do remember parking my 1966 Shelby Mustang next to it………………the good old days!! This is a VERY, VERY good site thank you so much!!

  11. Blindmarc

    Way too much money. I’ve owned several, and I wish they would have posted the fender tag. The original exhaust manifolds alone will cost a pretty penny. Also, the stock steering wheel was the same on all duster models and was ugly as hell. Not sure if you could get the “tuff wheel” as an option. I always got mine at the junkyards.

    • JoeNYWF64

      I wonder what you think of the std steering wheel on the chargers(even on the superbird) lol
      I think its horn ring makes it look like grandmas steering wheel in her 4 door, & worse than the duster 340 one.
      The mustang II interior in black i think looks real good, incl steering wheel – racing mirrors, thin pillars, & good visibilty are a plus, tho too bad the HVAC are to the LEFT of the steering wheel – very awkward if you ask me, especially with a cranky passenger. lol
      Imagine the latter in a car today!

  12. wedge eater

    I have a 72 340 duster/4speed/8/34 posi, in pieces as we are starting to get it together. It started out as a severe basket case and progress is slow.
    My driver is a 67 Coronet 500 came originally as a small block. I acquired a 62 Dodge 330/413 MAX wedge,wrecked at the drag strip. I placed the real wedge into my Dodge. The engine/2×4 bbl holleys, 425 hp, crossover intake, 3.96 posi gears and beefed up tranny. There were wedges (true wedge) in the 413, this involved into the 426 wedge. These are the only true wedges mopar built. The early 340 came with X heads(very large valves,high compression) in 72 the heads were J heads(to be ran on the new 360 engines) These heads stayed around for only two years when the feds started emissions crap. To make it a nut shell, the 360 stayed around for a spell until both the 318/360 were obsolete by the early 90’s.

    • randy

      My dad bought a new ’68 Coronet 500 convertible, with a 383 magnum and the go pack, or drag pack whatever it was called on Mopars. He kept braking stuff on it, so he traded it for a 71 olds cutlass conv. that he still has, we both wish he still had the Coronet.

  13. piper62j

    Nice ride.. Better left to the Mopar Aficionados..

    I see the ballast resistor is mounted on the driver side firewall. Biggest problem with those was (in snow country) when the hood was lifted up, melted snow or ice or cold rain water would slide down the hood an land right on that hot resistor.. We would perform whatever work was needed- tune up, lube & oil…. Close the hood and the engine would not start.. Come to find out the ice & snow hit the resistor and cracked it preventing current flow to the distributor…

    Chrysler didn’t have a clue at the time.. What a nightmare…

  14. roger

    Who cares if it is original?
    I would drive the wheels off of it.
    COOL CAR

    • randy

      For that price?

  15. John H Bell

    I owned an original 1971 340 back in the late ’70s and the wedge decal was only applied with a flat black hood treatment that carried over the door tops and around the rear side and door glass, then back to the base of the windshield. Mine was Winchester gray, a sort of gunmetal color that everybody loved. I do believe this decal was only offered in ’71 as ’72 models sometimes had hash mark hood stripes, similar to the Duster Twister option. This car featured here should have a letter H in the VIN. The later Dusters just do not measure up to the 70-71 models!

  16. John H Bell

    Blacked out grille and painted rear bumper…not correct and lazy fixes to boot!

    Like 1
  17. dutchb340

    And it did not sell on EBay.

  18. Mark-A

    The debate about the car having 71 Wedge decals on a 73 car, might it be possible that the car was a 1971 original Wedge but lay unloved in the back of the dealership for a couple of years & wasn’t registered until 1973? Just a thought?

  19. randy

    The title has to indicate year of manufacture, I bought a new 2013 motorcycle in 2015, and the title stated it is/was a 2013.

  20. John

    I owned a 1972 340 Black in color with white interior beautiful car. The engine was green in color. The horse power was cut by a change in the camshaft in 72. The 70-71 340 were orange in color and had the racer brown cam and was rated at 275 hp, but was about 330hp and the 72’s were rated at 240hp. The 72 model was the best looking, but I’d take any up to the 1973 model. Great driving and running car.

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